Do you still identify yourself as a (insert previous career)? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 24 Old 05-25-2005, 03:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I still think of myself as a teacher. I spent many years studying to be a teacher and finally taught for two years before becoming a mom and SAHM.

It took me a while to not outwardly identify myself as a teacher. I used to fill out forms as "teacher" and I would tell people I was currently SAHM, but I was a teacher. I no longer feel as much of a need to do this.

But, within myself, I am still a teacher. Does that make sense?

I guess that is good since we plan on homeschooling. :LOL

I still love to read "teaching" things - mostly related to my DS's level of development.

I am wondering if it is because we want to homeschool, I am really feeling the finality of not being in a classroom again.

Is your previous career still an important part of your identity?

Children deserve the respect of puzzling it out.
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#2 of 24 Old 05-25-2005, 07:56 PM
 
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great question! :
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#3 of 24 Old 05-25-2005, 08:15 PM
 
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i don't identify myself with any previous career. though mostly because i don't think i really had a career. i had jobs. some of which i liked and some of which i hated. if i ever identified myself as anything it was through working in the theatre for which i was never particularly paid but which made my soul sucking job ok most days. in fact i find it kind of a relief to say i stay home with lucie when i'm asked what i 'do'. it's easier than explaining the difference between how i made my money with what gave me purpose.
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#4 of 24 Old 05-25-2005, 09:57 PM
 
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I've been a SAHM for 3 years now and I still identify myself mostly as a librarian. I think it's because I know that I'm only going to stay home temporarily. We just haven't decided when I'll be going back to work.

I also think that I have a hard time identifying myself only as a SAHM because I consider myself a feminist and I feel like I need to EXPLAIN so much. We made a conscious decision that one of us would stay home with our daughter and it made a lot more sense financially and otherwise for it to be me. Isn't it kind of silly that all this stuff goes through my head? I just don't want anyone thinking I'm someone who thinks it's a woman's duty to stay home with her kids. I think I feel this way in large part because my dh's family is of the "women should stay home and raise kids" mindset and I want to distance myself from them as much as possible. Good grief. I really should just try not to worry about stuff like this and focus on things that are important!
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#5 of 24 Old 05-25-2005, 10:13 PM
 
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I used to. I took a 3 year leave of absence and for the first two years kept saying, "I'm a systems analyst/programmer at L. company, on a leave of absence." Then the last year I became very comfortable saying "homemaker" or "stay at home mom" for my profession. I think it's about the pressure society puts on us to BE something that clouded my judgement. I'm a mom... and it's a proud and noble "profession". It took me some time as a "career" woman to get there, but I'm finally there.

Last month I went back to work for a few weeks. I really hate corporate life. And I hated leaving my daughter and I hated giving so much more to a company than to my family. But I did gain an extraordinary respect for women who work and are mothers. WOW!! What amazing women! Utmost respect!
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#6 of 24 Old 05-25-2005, 10:20 PM
 
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Yes, I still consider and call myself an RN. I continue to keep up my CEU's to keep up my license and I truly do plan to RTW (or school to get my MSN to be a NP) someday. Just not now, when my kids are still babies. Probably when they are old enough to be in a full day of school (unless we decide to homeschool). There are a lot of what ifs for me. Even as an RN, I may not RTW at a traditional hospital/office/clinic setting, BUT I might consider possibly getting my certification to become a LC, it compliments with my background as an RN and my passion for BFing. I was feeling really burnt out as a critical care nurse.
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#7 of 24 Old 05-26-2005, 10:13 AM
 
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Nope, i refer to myself as a stay at home mom.......i don't feel like i need to explain myself to anyone, unless they ask i guess....i think too many people look down on SAHMs and feel as though we have given up our lives and dreams to sit at home with screamin kids.....and i feel it's the exact opposite, i really enjoy staying at home and i think it's the best thing for my family and it's the hardest job/career i've ever had, and there is definitly no sitting on my butt all day
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#8 of 24 Old 05-26-2005, 11:51 AM
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Good question!

I've been having issues with this lately.............


I identify myself as a mother and wife.

I do have aspirations and talents and training in many areas........I am a writer also, always have been...but mother is what I am and do right now and all that matters currently. It gets to me some days...but probably due to the need for more factor (education, adult interaction etc)
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#9 of 24 Old 05-26-2005, 01:49 PM
 
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I don't really identify myself as a regulatory consultant, but then again I didn't identify myself that way when I did it. It's just one of the many things that I do (or, rather, did), you know? I also don't really identify myself as a mom or wife - these are just components of me, not anything that defines me.

I'm trying to think of what I'd say if anyone asked what I do. I'd probably laugh and say something like, "My God, what don't I do" and let the conversation flow from there. I was in a conversation once where I figured out that the person was looking for my job title - something I never had even when earning in the six figures - so I just said that I didn't have a title, but that I was the person who gave them out when I hired people.

I have to confess this, though: I met a family - one mom, one dad, two kids - where it appears that no one actually has any employment to speak of. They don't strike me as rich or anything, just regular every-day folk. And it's making me CRAZY trying to figure out how they pay their bills! I know, it's so hypocritical of me, but neither of them ever says anything like, "Well, I had a conference call today" or "Wow, is the boss annoying me" or "Our clients really love this new widget we're selling". Nothing - no clue whatsoever. I'll never ask, but boy is it making me nuts! : So in my quest to eliminate self-identification in terms of jobs or even a single activity, here I am trying to define this family. Wrong in a million ways.
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#10 of 24 Old 05-26-2005, 02:12 PM
 
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I'm a mom. I plan on being a SAHM possibly forever (my kids have special needs, so that may not be an exaggeration). BUT -- I am also a teacher. I just don't get paid anymore. I keep my license current in case I ever *need* to go back to work (my husband got laid off once -- always good to have a backup plan). I still read about education, but instead of perusing English journals, I devour teaching methods to help my kids. We are not homeschooling (would *not* be good for my kids), but at the same time, we are because I believe that the majority of learning occurs at home regardless of your choice. So when people ask me what I do, I say "I'm a mom" without any twinges because to me, being a teacher is such an integral part of being a mom.
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#11 of 24 Old 05-26-2005, 02:20 PM
 
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I tell people that I am retired.
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#12 of 24 Old 05-26-2005, 02:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by virgo mommy
Nope, i refer to myself as a stay at home mom.......i don't feel like i need to explain myself to anyone, unless they ask i guess....i think too many people look down on SAHMs and feel as though we have given up our lives and dreams to sit at home with screamin kids.....and i feel it's the exact opposite, i really enjoy staying at home and i think it's the best thing for my family and it's the hardest job/career i've ever had, and there is definitly no sitting on my butt all day

hmmm. what I meant was within yourself, do you still identify yourself as your previous career. Is your previous career still a part of your current identity as a person?

I agree with you about not needing to explain yourself to other people.

Children deserve the respect of puzzling it out.
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#13 of 24 Old 05-27-2005, 12:25 AM
 
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Nope. Within myself, I could not care less about being a lawyer. My job as SAHM is sooo much better! Not necessarily easier...just better. I will eventually go back but that's in the very distant future as I'm seriously considering homeschooling. I do keep my bar membership current but that's only because I'm NOT taking that stupid test again.

FTR...lol...I know what I said is contradicted by my username; however, it's a name I used on other boards long before DS was born and it's just easier to keep the same name.

- Kim
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#14 of 24 Old 05-27-2005, 12:38 AM
 
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yep, I still see my identity as an artist, something I've always been and always will be--- mama got added into the mix... and I must admit it took me a long time to call myself a SAHM when someone asked "what do you do?" not b/c I am ashamed of it or need to hide it or anything, but to me it felt constricting and limiting in other's eyes, so that they could easily put me in a box with "SAHM"...
and I have never liked the feeling of being labeled. no one is just one thing.
When I got pregnant I was running my own business- weaving scarves and fabrics and making bags and such to sell at a local market, and then couldnt keep up with that with taking care of my ds, but I still consider myself a weaver, designer and artist, even tho I havent been getting money for it, its jsut part of my identity!
being a mama to a toddler sure does take all my energy! some day I hope to have more time for my art!

homeschooling mama to 8 yr old biggrinbounce.gif with a new little one(5-5-2011) babyf.gif...  h20homebirth.gif

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#15 of 24 Old 05-27-2005, 05:20 PM
 
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No -- I sometimes refer to my previous work when I'm trying to explain that I might actually be qualified to have an opinion about a particular subject, but other than that, I identify as a SAHM.

When I quit my job, I did so without any real expectation that I would resume work in the same field in the future. I felt that I was embarking on a new career as a SAHM, and that I had no idea where that would take me.

Sonja , 40, married to DH (42) since 5-29-93, DD born 11-3-2004, DS born 1-18-2007.
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#16 of 24 Old 05-27-2005, 10:36 PM
 
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[QUOTE=skueppers
When I quit my job, I did so without any real expectation that I would resume work in the same field in the future. I felt that I was embarking on a new career as a SAHM, and that I had no idea where that would take me.[/QUOTE]


:
Very well put, that's exactly how I felt and still feel!
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#17 of 24 Old 05-27-2005, 11:06 PM
 
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Before I was a mother I was in Musical Theatre. I was a student at the time but I got paid for performances I did outside of the ones in school. I would classify myself as an entertainer, so therefore being a SAHM I still refer to myself as an entertainer, because I'm teaching my daughter how to dance and we perform our "routines" for daddy, and we sing songs, and talk about emotions and all that kind of stuff. (ie: Show me you mad face...now say this with your mad face, etc. in a mirror) We play lots of pretend and such and now my daughter has a VIVID imagination, and we were at a thriftstore today and she busted out "Tommorrow" from Annie. When people clapped she took a bow. And one lady came over and asked me how old she was and I said she'd be 3 in July, her jaw dropped to the floor, becuase evidently kids her age aren't supposed to speak that well, let alone SING. So maybe I should consider myself a teacher too....considering my goal one day is to open my own Performing Arts school.
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#18 of 24 Old 05-28-2005, 12:19 AM
 
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I was a research psychologist and visiting professor before. I don't identify myself as either of those, career-wise, but my education and background always come into play.
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#19 of 24 Old 05-28-2005, 11:38 AM
 
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i'm self-employed :-)

I mean, that's how I label it sometimes. (used to actually be SE the way people think I mean, but no longer)
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#20 of 24 Old 05-28-2005, 03:13 PM
 
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I never really had a previous career. I was a data entry specialist before I had DS #1. That was my first real job and I worked "joe jobs" before that.

Loving Mom to DS (7) and DS (5).
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#21 of 24 Old 06-04-2005, 02:12 AM
 
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I do identify myself as a horticulturist for a few reasons:
--It is also one of my hobbies. I just happen to have degrees in it.
--Prior to becoming a mom, I did quite a bit of self-employed consulting work (mostly landscape design), and I could still do some at any time, since I frequently have people asking me to.
--Last fall, I taught one class at the community college (less than 10 hours per week), and may teach it again this fall.
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#22 of 24 Old 06-05-2005, 01:33 AM
 
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My kids are my life's work--when ppl ask I say I'm a professional mama

Freethinking Earth-mama of five. uc.jpg

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#23 of 24 Old 06-05-2005, 02:10 AM
 
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I usually say I am a mom, and that I taught before staying home with my kids. I plan to go back to it, at least part-time, and it is a part of my identity. I taught for more years (6) than I have been a SAHM (almost 5). I don't think it implies any sort of shame for my current position. I think my job as a teacher was very interesting, and I think about it often. Right now I am staying home, and that's great for me now.

L.
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#24 of 24 Old 06-05-2005, 10:48 AM
 
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I never felt like I could say 'I'm a X' - my career was not one with a clearly identifiable label others would recognize. I generally identified as 'I work for X corporation' because folks would recognize who that was and if they were interested I could go into explaining what I did. So I never really identified with it.

On the side of feeling like its a part of me though, I still do because DH works in the same industry for the same company I did and is even moving slowly to a position more like mine than he had before - so we often discuss situations at his work and I give him advice on how to handle them. So I still feel its a part of who I am.

Mightymoo - Mom to DD (6) and DS (4)
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